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Nawal Benaissa speaks out for social justice and better health care services in her region, Rif, where many people feel forgotten by their government. As one of the leading voices of a popular movement called Hirak, she’s been on peaceful protests and campaigned for change on social media.

Every step of the way, she’s been harassed by the Moroccan authorities in an attempt to silence her. They arrested and held her in custody four times in just four months, and demanded she close her Facebook profile which had 80,000 followers.

In February 2018, she was given a 10-month suspended sentence and a fine for “inciting to commit an offence”. She’s appealing the verdict, but the intimidation continues. She’s moved to another city to avoid constant surveillance.

Nawal’s treatment is part of a major crackdown on the Hirak movement and its leaders. Moroccan security forces have arrested hundreds of peaceful protesters, some just for expressing their support on Facebook.

For Nawal, the solution is simple. She wants to be completely free to fight for a better future for her community and her children.

Call on the Prime Minister of Morocco to end the harassment of Nawal.

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  Our Petition

 

Prime Minister of Morocco, Saadeddine Othmani

Dear Prime Minister,

Nawal Benaissa is a 37-year-old human rights defender who has done nothing more than exercise her rights to freedom of expression and assembly.

Yet since June 2017 she has faced harassment by security forces, surveillance and repeated arbitrary arrest, just for speaking out for peaceful change in the Rif, northern Morocco. A court in Al Hoceima, her native city, served her with a 10-month suspended sentence once again purely in relation to her peaceful and legitimate campaigning.

I urge you to do all in your power to end the harassment of Nawal Benaissa and her family, so she can be free to campaign for social justice for her community.

Yours Sincerely,

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